|FIBA ranking||19 (18 November 2022)|
|FIBA zone||FIBA Africa|
|National federation||Nigeria Basketball Federation|
|FIBA World Cup|
|Medals|| Gold: (2015)|
Silver: (1997, 1999, 2003, 2017)
Bronze: (1995, 2005, 2011)
|All Africa Games|
|Medals|| Gold: (2011)|
Bronze: (1995, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2015)
In March 2021, the global governing body FIBA ranked Nigeria as Africa's top men's basketball nation. After the 2016 Olympic Men's Basketball Tournament in Rio, Nigeria was ranked 16th in the FIBA World Rankings, making them the top climber in FIBA rankings from 2015.
Nigeria is the only African nation to beat the United States. Nigeria is also the first African team to qualify for the Summer Olympics through the FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament. This was accomplished at the 2012 Event when Nigeria beat the world elite teams of Lithuania and Greece. In 2015, Nigeria won its first crown as basketball champion of Africa.
The history of basketball in Nigeria goes as far back as the late 1950s when Walid Zabadne served as the first basketball coach to train Nigerians. At the time, Nigeria's only basketball court was situated in the Syrian Club in Lagos. Walid Zabadne continued teaching young Nigerians to become basketballers and when Nigeria's basketball federation was organized, he took them to several basketball competitions across Africa. In view of his role as the pioneer of basketball in Nigeria, Walid Zabadne has been deemed "father of Nigerian basketball’’. Also worthy of note is that Zabadne was later made the president of the Nigerian Basketball Federation.
Nigeria's national basketball team joined FIBA in 1964. Since the mid-1990s, the team has enjoyed unprecedented success, due to an increasing amount of talents from Nigeria as well as an orchestrated recruitment of American college and professional players of Nigerian descent. The D'Tigers (as the team is nicknamed) qualified for the 2006 FIBA World Championship, marking only the second time in the country's history that they qualified to the FIBA World Cup. Team Nigeria usually plays its home games at the 3,000-capacity Indoor Sports Hall in Lagos.
2006 FIBA World ChampionshipEdit
Nigeria took part in the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan. They were drawn in Group A with Argentina, France, Lebanon, Serbia and Montenegro, and Venezuela. They surprisingly finished third in Group A, then were narrowly defeated by Germany in the Round of 16. Overall they finished 14th, as they achieved the same record as the defending world champion Serbia and Montenegro.
2012 Summer OlympicsEdit
Nigeria competed at the 2012 Summer Olympics. They finished the group play with a 1–4 record, with their lone victory coming against Tunisia in their Olympics debut. The team's roster, assembled by coach Ayodele Bakare, primarily comprised former college basketball players.
2016 Summer OlympicsEdit
Nigeria qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympics tournament as champions of AfroBasket 2015. They finished at the bottom of Group B, winning one game against Croatia and losing four games. The team entered the 2016 games with several injured players and little financial support from the Nigerian government.
2020 Summer OlympicsEdit
As the top African team at the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup, Nigeria qualified for their third consecutive Olympics berth for the 2020 Summer Olympics. The team, which included seven NBA players and was led by Golden State Warriors assistant coach Mike Brown, was called up for training in the United States in June 2021. D'Tigers defeated the United States 90–87 during an exhibition game in Las Vegas on 10 July. The victory, described as an "upset", was the first for an African team against the United States.
Team honours and achievementsEdit
- FIBA Stanković Continental Champions' Cup
- Bronze: 2013, 2016
- Basketball at the Commonwealth Games
- Fourth-place: 2006
|Olympics record||Qualification record|
|1964||Did not qualify||AfroBasket served as qualification|
FIBA World CupEdit
|FIBA World Cup record||Qualification record|
|1967||Did not qualify||AfroBasket served as qualification|
|2002||Did not qualify|
|2006||Round of 16||14th||6||2||4|
|2010||Did not qualify|
FIBA Africa ChampionshipEdit
|1965||Did not qualify|
|1974||Did not qualify|
|1981||Did not qualify|
|1989||Did not qualify|
|1993||Did not qualify|
|2021||Round of 16||12th||4||2||2|
- 1973 – ?
- 1987 – ?
- 1995 –
- 1999 –
- 2003 –
- 2007 –
- 2011 –
- 2015 –
FIBA Stanković Continental Champions' CupEdit
- 2013 –
- 2016 –
- 2006 – 4th
- 2018 – 5th
|Nigeria men's national basketball team roster|
|Pos.||Starting 5||Bench 1||Bench 2||Bench 3|
|C||Precious Achiuwa||Jahlil Okafor||Charles Bassey||Udoka Azubuike|
|PF||Chimezie Metu||Chima Moneke||KZ Okpala||Suleiman Braimoh|
|SF||Jordan Nwora||Miye Oni||Miye Oni||Stan Okoye|
|SG||Gabe Vincent||Josh Okogie||Obi Emegano||Ike Nwamu|
|PG||Monte Morris||Spencer Dinwiddie|
Several players of the Nigeria national team have had success playing for professional teams, in the NBA, or in Europe, including:
- Julius Nwosu
- Akin Akingbala
- Peter Aluma
- Aloysius Anagonye
- Tunji Awajobi
- Ike Diogu
- Obinna Ekezie
- Ebi Ere
- Benjamin Eze
- Ekene Ibekwe
- Ike Iroegbu (born 1995)
- Gani Lawal
- Michael Olowokandi
- Olumide Oyedeji
- Ime Udoka
- Jeff Varem
- Al-Farouq Aminu
- Festus Ezeli
2009 African Championship: finished 5th among 16 teams
Akin Akingbala, Aloysius Anagonye, Chamberlain Oguchi, Deji Akindele, Michael Efevberha, Michael Umeh, Josh Akognon, Ebi Ere, Ejike Ugboaja, Gabe Muoneke, Jayson Obazuaye, Benson Egemonye (Coach: John Lucas II)
2011 African Championship: finished 3rd among 16 teams
2012 Summer Olympics: finished 10th among 12 teams
Tony Skinn, Ekene Ibekwe, Ike Diogu, Al-Farouq Aminu, Ade Dagunduro, Chamberlain Oguchi, Koko Archibong, Richard Oruche, Ejike Ugboaja, Derrick Obasohan, Alade Aminu, Olumide Oyedeji (Coach: Ayo Bakare)
- Vladislav Lučić 1975–1980
- Sam Vincent 2004–2006
- Sani Ahmed 2006
- Robert McCullum 2007
- John Lucas II 2009
- Sani Ahmed 2010, 2013
- Ayo Bakare 2011–2014
- William Voigt 2015–2017
- Alexander Nwora 2017–present Associate Headcoach from 2020–present.
- Mike Brown 2020–2022
- Alan Major July 2022–present
- "FIBA Ranking Presented by Nike". FIBA. 18 November 2022. Retrieved 18 November 2022.
- "Omnisports – Basketball : Le Nigéria toujours " Number One " en Afrique". AfricaFootUnited.com (in French). 3 March 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
- "FIBA rankings". FIBA. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
- "The need for proper Basketball arena(s) in Nigeria". temidayojnr.medium.com/. 13 April 2019. Retrieved 2 September 2021.
- Ayodele (1 March 2017). "Lagos ready to take over Surulere National Stadium – Ambode". Punch. Retrieved 3 September 2021.
- Young, Sonny (29 July 2012). "Nigeria, Tunisia Tip Off London Olympic Men's Basketball". Voice of America. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- Bishop, Greg (6 August 2012). "Bruised and Beaten, but Nigerians Are Unbowed". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- Wolff, Alexander (8 August 2016). "Nigeria's men's basketball team left scrambling after financial, player issues". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- "Nigeria open Tokyo 2020 camp in California with 49-man list". FIBA. 24 June 2021. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- Abrams, Jonathan (10 July 2021). "Nigeria Wins Historic Upset Over Team U.S.A. in Olympic Exhibition". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- Windhorst, Brian (10 July 2021). "Team USA stunned by Nigeria in rare exhibition basketball loss ahead of Tokyo Olympics". ESPN. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
- "Team Roster Nigeria". fiba.basketball. Retrieved 12 September 2021.
- "Forget it, Nigeria. Victor Oladipo is gone!". Basketball. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "Tokyo Olympics: D'Tigers' coach names provisional squad, omits Diogu". premiumtimesng.com. 6 July 2021. Retrieved 6 July 2021.
- "Nigeria unveil Tokyo 2020 roster with eight NBA stars". fiba.basketball. 20 July 2021. Retrieved 20 July 2021.
- "Team Roster Nigeria" (PDF). olympics.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 July 2021. Retrieved 24 July 2021.
- "NBBF hires Will Voigt to lead D'Tigers to Afrobasket and All African Games; may lead team to Rio 2016 Olympic Games". Basketball. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Ayodele (9 August 2017). "Afrobasket: NBBF appoints Alex Nwora as D'Tigers coach". Punch. Retrieved 3 September 2021.
- Goldberg, Wes (4 February 2020). "Warriors assistant Mike Brown will coach Nigeria in 2020 Olympics: report". The Mercury News. Retrieved 3 September 2021.
- Danmallam, Shamsudeen (28 June 2022). "Basketball: Alan Major to coach male national team". 21st CENTURY CHRONICLE. Retrieved 28 June 2022.
- Official website
- FIBA Profile
- Nigeria Basketball Records at FIBA Archive
- Afrobasket – Nigeria Men National Team
- Nigeria – Team Highlights – AfroBasket 2015 Youtube.com video